The Secret to Living Longer May Be Your Social Life

I’ve just read Susan Pinker’s fantastic book, The Village Effect: Why Face-to-face Contact Matters.  It’ll make you rethink the way you live your life & approach your health.  According to Julianne Holt-Lunstad’s 2010 research, the thing that’s most likely to reduce your risk of dying is social integration (on multiple levels, both strong & weak ties) – a strong sense of belonging in a community.  The #2 predictor is strong relationships & social support – having people in your life who you can rely on.  These are both things even single people can do.  According to the book, it may account for the fact women live longer than men.

Smoking less than 15 cigarettes is #3. Giving up heavy drinking is #5.

Just out of curiosity, exercising & staying lean are only numbers 6 & 7 on the list. It seems it’s more important to get a flu vaccine.

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